Dolly Parton opened up about a very dark time in her life and said flat-out that her faith in God saved her life and marriage.
“It was a really bad time,” the 72-year-old country legend shared in Closer Weekly Wednesday. “Sometimes, God just has to smack you down. He was almost saying, ‘Sit your pretty little ass down because we have to deal with some stuff!'”
It follows a period in her life in the 1980s when she found out that she had a medical situation and needed to undergo a partial hysterectomy. The result meant she would never be able to have children with her husband Carl Thomas Dean, who she wed in 1966.
The whole episode drew her into a two-year depression as she also battled with having feelings for another man. She said the guilt of that emotional affair led her to pick up a gun and contemplate suicide.
“I looked at [the gun] a long time,” Parton explained. “Then, just as I picked it up, just to hold it and look at it for a moment, our little dog, Popeye, came running up the stairs. The tap-tap of his paws jolted me back to reality. I suddenly froze and I put the gun down.”
“I kinda believe Popeye was a spiritual messenger from God,” she added. “I don’t think I’d have done it — killed myself — but I can’t say for sure. Now that I’ve gone through that terrible moment, I can certainly understand the possibilities, even for someone solid like me, if the pain gets bad enough. A belief in God is essential.”
As one friend shared with the outlet, “She always lets God’s hand guide her through life, and she’s always come to the realization that God believes her place is with Carl.”